An Old Married Couple

by P. R. Zed


"Hear you're looking for a ride, Doyle."

"You heard right, Murph. Jax picked me up this morning, but Cowley's got him chasing down a grass in Neasden."

"Well, hop in. We don't want you frightening the locals."

"Too kind."

"Where to? You're in Finsbury Park, aren't you?"

"Yeah, but drop me in Kensington. Promised Bodie I'd cook him dinner tonight, to celebrate the cast coming off."

"So, how's Bodie doing?"

"He's all right. Did nothing but complain 'bout how itchy the cast was, so he's pleased it's gone. And he starts physio tomorrow."

"Bet he'll be glad to get out of Records."

"Yeah. Not an indoor lad, our Bodie. Though he's not looking forward to suffering Macklin's tender care."

"No doubt. Brian'll be waiting to take him apart after what Bodie said at the Christmas party."

"Too right. But it was worth it for the look on Brian's face."

"And Towser's. Calling them an old married couple. Bodie wants to watch himself."

"Towser's all right. Buy him a pint and he a pussycat."

"If your idea of a pussycat is a 500 pound tiger."

"I'm just happy that tiger's gonna be mauling Bodie, not me."

"I wouldn't be so sure about that, Ray. Cowley likes his teams to train together, doesn't he?"

"That's hardly fair. I wasn't the one who tripped over his own feet in a chippy and broke his arm."

"Still can't believe Bodie did that."

"Neither can he."

"The lads are never going to let him forget it, you know."

"They will after he thumps the lot of them."

"Be a few weeks yet till he's up to that, won't it?"

"Won't stop him from trying, though."

"You're right, there. He's a stubborn bastard."

"You try being his partner, mate."

"No thanks, I'll leave that to you. Hmm."

"What?"

"Do you know who really are?"

"Are what?"

"An old married couple."

"Who?"

"You and Bodie."

"Not fucking likely!"

"The outrage would be more believable if you didn't spend all your time together."

"We do not."

"You do so. Cook for him, don't you?"

"Only when he's incapable."

"Which is most of the time, to listen to you. You clean for him."

"Nah. It's you military types who get off on keeping things neat and tidy, isn't it?"

"You certainly bicker like an old married couple."

"I don't know what you're talking about."

"Yeah, I'm sure you don't. Here we are. Mind yourself getting out of the car. Wouldn't want you to trip and break something too."

"You mind yourself, Murph. Never know when you might have a nasty accident."

"Promises, promises, Doyle."


"Bloody Murphy."

"Nice lad, Murph. What's he done that's so horrible?"

"Do you know what he called us?"

"What?"

"An old married couple."

"No."

"Yeah. I'm going to thump him, see if I don't."

"Well, I can see what he means. You are looking a bit long in the tooth."

"It's not the old bit that bothers me."

"What's the matter petal? Don't want to make an honest man of me?"

"It'd take more than a wedding to do that. No, I'm more worried about how much Murph knows."

"Doesn't know a thing."

"Maybe not, but what does he suspect?"

"Even if he suspects, he'll never say a word. A good lad, our Murph."

"Yeah, I suppose you're right."

"I'm always right."

"Smug bastard."

"That's why you love me, innit?"

"In spite of it, Bodie, not because of it."

"So, would you, if you could?"

"Would I what?"

"Make an honest man of me?"

"Fancy a walk down the aisle, do you?"

"Always thought you'd look smashing in white tulle, Doyle."

"Sod off, Bodie."

"Oi, you started it."

"Murph started it. And I'm finishing it. Right here."

"Not bloody likely. Not when I'm enjoying myself this much."

"A sadist, that's what you are."

"You accuse me of sadism, sir? How dare you?"

"Don't you come all posh with me, Sunshine. I'll 'ave ya."

"You, sir, are a ruffian."

"And you're a fraud...Oof. Gerroff me, you bastard."

"Not until you've answered a few questions, Doyle."

"I'll throw you across the room. Break your arm again. See if I don't."

"You couldn't manage it. I outweigh you by a stone."

"You're not only a bastard, Bodie, you're also a liar. You outweigh me by two stone at least."

"I shall ignore that insult to my trim physique if you answer my question."

"Which question was that again?"

"Would you make an honest man of me?"

"It'd take more than wedding vows to make you honest, mate."

"Would you?"

"Yeah. Yeah, I s'pose I would. Though I don't know why I put up with you."

"It's my handsome exterior and charming demeanour."

"Yeah, that must be it."

"You laughing at me?"

"Nah. You're imaging things, Bodie."

"Hmm."

"And what about you? Would you make an honest man of me? Say the words?"

"What words are those, then?"

"Don't be thick, Bodie. You know: love, honour and obey."

"I don't obey anyone. Except Cowley. When I feel like it."

"Come to that, neither do I. Just love and honour, then."

"I suppose I could manage that."

"What about the rest, Bodie? For richer for poorer?"

"For poorer, I think. We do work for George Cowley, after all."

"For better for worse?"

"Do you have a better side, Doyle? 'Cause I haven't seen it."

"Just you let go of me and I'll show you my better side."

"I don't think I'll do that quite yet."

"Coward."

"Pragmatist."

"Is that what they're calling it these days?"

"Remember who's got who pinned down, Sunshine."

"Yeah, I'm quaking in me boots. Go on then, what about the rest? In sickness and in health?"

"Who looked after you when you were shot?"

"Fair enough. Forsaking all others?"

"Ah, c'mon, Doyle. You've got to leave a lad some secrets."

"Bastard."

"Oi, watch where you're kicking or I'll be forsaking you."

"Answer the fucking question, Bodie. Have you?"

"What?"

"Forsaken all others? And you can stop grinning, you infuriating idiot."

"Yeah. S'pose I must have done. You?"

"You know I 'ave, Bodie."

"What's left?"

"Till death do us part."

"Fuckin' right, mate. And you'd better make sure that's not for a bloody long time."

"I will if you will."

"Well, that's it, then."

"What's it, Bodie?"

"Looks like we're committed to each other."

"You should be committed, mate. To a room with padded walls, guarded by men in white coats."

"Whither I goest, Doyle, thou will go."

"Think you've got that backwards."

"Maybe."

"Berk."

"But I'm your berk, aren't I?"

"And don't you forget it."

Fin


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